Coming soon: A time to wake up your taste buds. The place: home.stead bakery in Fields Corner. The date: July 14, when a pop-up of food samples to be offered by a new Fields Corner restaurant will take over the popular cafe from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
The eatery, called 50Kitchen, last year’s winner of the Fields Corner Collaborative Business Pitch Competition, will serve fast-casual fusion-style food inspired by Southern American and Asian American cuisine, courtesy of chef Anthony Caldwell, at its 1452 Dorchester Ave. location.
For a $10 entry fee, which will go toward the $50,000 fundraising goal for the restaurant, guests at the pop-up will be tasting from a spread of four to five small plates created by Caldwell, a Dorchester native who will be at the July 14 event. Drinks will be available for purchase from Home.Stead, located just a few doors down from the 50Kitchen’s operation.
The restaurant sees the bakery as “the best neighbors,” said Evette Caldwell, Anthony’s wife. “And we haven’t even moved in yet!” This show of neighborly love will be an opportunity to get to know the person behind the food, to hear his story, and, he hopes, “consider ourselves friends” by the time you leave.
Anthony Caldwell grew up in Dorchester in the late 1980s, a time he described as “rough.” He was introduced to the restaurant industry while incarcerated in 2004, and fell in love with it and the artistry behind it. In 2010, he was crime-free but addicted to alcohol when his faith spoke to him, showing him that if he did not change his ways, alcohol would be the death of him. So, Caldwell redirected his life, taking a leap of faith and doing everything necessary to have his own restaurant in the works by his 50th birthday. He has met his goal: He turned 50 this week (July 3) and looks forward to an opening by late summer.
“I was given 2,000 chances, so I believe in second chances,” he said. And he plans to practice just that, by creating a mentorship program with local schools enabling kids to live the life of a chef for a day, by donating leftover food to local homeless shelters, and by hiring those to whom “society has told ‘no,’ and will keep telling ‘no,’” he said, those wearing the shoes Caldwell once wore, adding “I want to be that bridge that takes people from hell to hope.”
Tickets to the pop-up can be purchased at eventbrite.com/e/50k-for-50kitchen-popup-restaurant-fundraiser-tickets-47299825050 . Donations to 50Kitchen can be made on the restaurant’s website, 50kitchen.com. With questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.